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1 POLA ND

2 CLICKING ON A FLAG ALLOWS TO GO BACK TO THE MAIN PAGE

3 1. Poland occupies 9th place in terms of its area and 8th place in terms of population. The length of Polish borders is 3511 km, including 440 km of the sea border (the coastline of the Baltic Sea, which is not a border line of the country counts 770 km). Poland borders with the following countries: from the west with Germany (467 km), from the south with Czech Republic (796 km) and Slovakia (541 km), from the east with Ukraine (535 km) and Belarus (418 km), from the north with Lithuania (104 km) and Russia (Kaliningrad Oblast, 210 km). 2. Poland is situated in Central European Time Zone, this is a solar time of 15°meridian running among others to the west of Jelenia Góra, Zielona Góra and Gorzów Wielkopolski and to the east of Szczecin. 3. Geometrical center of Poland is situated in Piątek near Łęczyca. The oldest (1775) estimated geometrical center of Europe is situated in Suchowola near Sokółka, in Podlaskie voivodeship. There is also a border that runs through the continental block of Eastern Europe, and through the Western Europe divided by the internal seas that is situated in Poland. GEOGAPHY

4 1. Poland is situated in moderate warm transitional temperate zone. In higher altitude of Sudety and Karpaty there is a mountain climate. In the summer the average temperature ranges from 17 °C at the seaside to 19,3 °C in Lower Silesia and near Tarnów. In the winter from 0 °C in Świnoujście, -1 °C in Nizina Śląska, Ziemia lubuska and at the seaside, -3 °C in Warsaw to less than -5 degrees Celsius in Suwalszczyzna. The average annual temperature ranges from over 9 °C near Wrocław, Legnica and Zielona Góra to about 6 °C in Suwalszczyzna. 2. The annual rainfall is estimated at about 600mm. The lowest – about 500 mm – is observed in Kujawy, which is connected with the location of this land in the rain shadow of lakelands; the highest – apart from the mountains – are observed in the middle part of the seacoast and in Silesian Highlands (annually about 750–800 mm). 3. The growing season lasts for about from days in north-east of the country to 235 days near Słubice, Głogów and Wrocław. 4. The ammount of days with a snow cup vary and rises as we move towards east. In Nizina Szczecińska, Ziemia lubuska and Silesian Lowlands the snow cup is lying for less than 40 days in the year, in central Poland about 60 days, and in Suwalszczyzna for more than 100 days. 5. The hot days with the maximal temperature of more than 25 °C, are from April to September, sometimes in October too. There are about of them at the coast to more than 40 in Subcarpathian region and Silesian Lowlands. The heat days with a maximal temperature over 30 °C are 1 in the north to 8 near Wrocław, Tarnów and Słubice. CLIMATE

5 From the 1st of January 1999 there is a three-level administrative division of the country on: 16 voivodeships consisting of the overall number of 379 counties including 65 city counties 314 land counties which consist of 2479 gminas in overall - including 306 urban gminas urban-rural gminas rural gminas According to the data from 1st of January ADMINISTRATIVE DIVISION

6 1. By the gross domestic product, Poland is the sixth economy of the European Union and twenty first economy of the world (in 2009). 2. Domestic product per capita according to the estimations of MFW in 2009 was nominally dolars, and after the estimation by purchasing power parity dolars and constituted 61% of the European Union average. The pace of economic growth positions Poland among the fastest developing countries of Europe – in 2009 GDP rose by 1,7%, which was the only positive result in the EU (average -4,1%). The growth of GDP per capita in Poland in years 1992–2002 was according to OECD dothe highest in the world and was 216% from the level of 4994 dolars in 1992 to dolars in 2002 according to the purchasing power parity. Service sector accounts for 67,3% of all the GDP, manufacturing/industrial 28,1%, and agricultural 4,6%. 3. Inflation in 2004 was 3,5%, in ,1%, in ,0%, in ,5%, in ,2%, in ,5%. 4. Poland is considered by UN as a very highly developed country with respect to the Human Development Index (HDI), which takes into account such factors as the life length, average length of education underwent by 25-year-olds and expected time of childrens education in school age, as well as GDP after the estimation by purchasing power parity. HDI index was 0,795 in 2010 r., which positions Poland on the 41 place in the world among 169 countries taken into account, between Portugal and Barbados. Poland is in debt of about 50% of its GDP, this is the level lower from the EU average, which is 73%. CHARACTERISTICS OF POLISH ECONOMY

7 1. The employment structure in the Polish Economy differs from the European standards, because 13% of people work in agricultural sector, whereas the average of EU is 5%, 57% of population works in service sector (average of EU is 68%), 30% of population works in industrial/manufacturing sector (average of EU is 26%). In Poland 59% of society in working age is employed, whereas the EU average is 64%. According to OECD in 2009 r. Poles were third as the longest working nation in the world after Greek and Hungarians – the annual average ammount of working hours per 1 worker was Owing to the work mechanization there is a rise in the work output in Poland too. Poland has also one of the lowest rate of trades union affiliation in Europe, being 14% with the majority in the state sector, in Ireland it is 45%, and in Sweden 80%. 3. The lowest gross salary in 2009 was: 1276 zł. 4.The unemployment at the end of 2009 was 11,9%. From the beginning of 2004 to the end of 2008 the systhematic drop in the unemployment was observed. At the end of 2004 it was estimated at 19%; in 2005 – 17,6%, in ,8%, in 2007 – 11,2%, in 2008 – 9,5%. According to Eurostat the level of unemployment is 8,2%, and according to GUS 10,6%. EMPLOYMENT

8 1. Education in state schools in Poland is free of charge. The only paid state education is extra-mural higher education. In academic year 2008/2009 there was 458 colleges, where there were 1,9 mln people studying. There were 98 thousand academic researchers working in colleges/at universities. Public expenditure for a higher education from of public and private origins constituted in year ,6% GDP. To compare in Italy they were 0,9%, in Germany 1,1%, and in Denmark 1,7% of GDP. The overal educational expenditure in year 2005 was estimated at 5,5% of GDP. 2. In the rank of 500 best worlds universities - ARWA 2009, there were two from Poland which qualified: Jagiellonian University and Warsaw University, both in the fourth hundred. EDUCATION

9 1. In the early 21st century Polish foreign policy was focused on the four priorities: achieving EU membership, strengthening of state security, pimprovement of the economic relations with foreign countries and strengthening of the regional stability and the Polish position in Central and Eastern Europe. 2. Foreign minister Radosław Sikorski in his exposé on 7th of May 2008 defined the directions of the Polish foreign policy in five areas: "Poland being stronger due to the power of the loyal European Union" (fuller exploitation of the opportunities arising from the participation in the European Union) the role of Poland in the global security system" (energetic security, diversification of sources and routes of supply of resources, the involvement in the stabilization actions of NATO, modernization of NATO, the placement of the elements of the Alliance military infrastructure in Poland, the enlargement of NATO to include Ukraine and Georgia); " strengthening of the Poland's image in the world "; "Polonia" (increasing the number of consular offices, the reform of the Polish educational system, which will allow citizens permanently living abroad for further education in Polish language and re- education of those who will want to come back, voting by the correspondence or through the Internet); " modern diplomatic service ". THE OBJECTIVES OF POLISH FOREIGN POLICY

10 1. Export Export in 2009 was estimated at 136 billion dollars which gave the 27th place in the world following Brazil and before Sweden. The largest part of Polish export constitute machines and transport equipment, including cars (41,4% profits from export), industrial goods (21,8%) and chemical industry products (13%). Major trading partners in terms of export are Germany (23% of the turnover), France (6%) and Italy (6%). 2. Import Import in 2009 was estimated at 149 billion dollars and gave 23th place in the world following United Arab Emirates and preceeding Austria. Import is mainly dominated by machinery and transport equipment (35,5% of import expenditure), industrial goods (18,7%) and mineral fuels including natural gas (11,2%). Major trading partners in terms of import are Germany (23% of the turnover), Russia (10%) and China (8%). FOREIGN TRADE

11 1. Medieval Literature in Poland, was being created under the influence of Western countries and Christianity. Till the end of the 13th century the literature throughout the country was being developed only in Latin, it was also usually anonymous. In the second period (12th-14th century) the first works in the national language started to appear (Florian Psalter, Bogurodzica). The literary works written in Polish started to appear more and more often from about 1543, when such writers as : Mikołaj Rej, Andrzej Frycz Modrzewski, Stanisław Hozjusz started to gain more acclaim. Polish Baroque literature (17th century) consists of several trends, including religious works of the Jesuits. Poetry expressed the sense of futility and the transience of worldly goods, love and happiness (Roksolanki by Zimorowic). There were also love poems (J. A. Morsztyn). The literature of Baroque also distinguishes picaresque works (mostly anonymous) in which the dominant role was played by parody, satire, grotesque and nonsense. Age of Enlightenment in Poland started in the first half of the 18th century; a large part of it dealt with civil and political affairs. Such trends were represented by Ignacy Krasicki and Adam Naruszewicz. These writers (also like Francis Bohomolec, Julian and Franciszek Zabłocki) were referring to classicism, connected with the works of antiquity. Next to it there was also a sentimental trend functioning in the framework of writers including Franciszek Karpiński and Franciszek Dionizy Kniaźnin. The most common literary genres of the era were: an ode, an idyll, fairytale and satire. LITERATURE

12 1. The most popular sport discipline in Poland is football. The biggest successes in this discipline Polish national football team gained in the 70s. up to the beginning of the 80s., when during the World Cup competition it was on the 3rd place in 1974 and The national team won a gold medal during the Summer Olympic Games in 1972, and also two silver medals in 1976 and in On the 18th of April 2007 UEFA president Michel Platini declared, EURO 2012 to be organized in Poland and in Ukraine. Polish host-cities of the matches of this event are Warsaw, Gdańsk, Poznań and Wrocław. The highest football league in Poland is called Ekstraklasa. 2. Speedway is an another sport which focuses a lot of interest. In this discipline such representatives as Tomasz Gollob, Jarosław Hampel, Janusz Kołodziej and Wiesław Jaguś are successful in the international arena. The most successful speedway clubs in Poland are Unia Leszno, Stal Gorzów, RKM Rybnik, Polonia Bydgoszcz. SPORT

13 1. Historical transformations were crucial in terms of the formation of the specific features of Polish cuisine. Throughout the centuries, Polish cuisine underwent various regional changes and influences, especially as the area of Poland was historically inhabited by the changing mosaic of nationalities. As a result, we have strong culinary influences of the East (Tatar-Turkish, earlier also Mongolian), Ruthenian, German, French, Italian and Jewish. 2. The most popular Polish dishes (all of them are popular in the neighbouring countries too) are among others: pierogi, kasha, dumplings, gołąbki, pork cutlet, bigos, soups (kapuśniak-cabbage soup, krupnik – barley soup, borsht, żur), dishes based on cabbage and potatoes, bread (rye bread, wheat bread), cakes, vegetables, fruit (apples, pears, various berries, currants), white cheese, as well as all types of meat (mainly pork, poultry and beef), prepared and served in various ways, and to a lesser extent sea fish and freshwater fish. Faworki is a specific Polish dessert, other bakery products including sand cake, gingerbread and donuts are popular too. NATIONAL CUISINE

14 FAMOUS POLES

15 John Paul II ( ) The most recognisable Pole in the world was born in Wadowice as Karol Józef Wojtyła. In 1978 he was chosen to be a head of the Roman Catholic Church, thereby becomming the first Pope from outside Italy for 445 years. The times of his pontificate are characterised by numerous reforms inside the church as an institution, as well as the change of the international immage of the Holy See. He went on many foreign pilgrimages, which always focussed the attention of thousands of the faithful. He also devoted a lot of attention to the ecumenical dialogue with the representatives of other faiths. JOHN PAUL II

16 Undoubtedly the leading figure of the first part of the 20th century in Polish history. At least two times his actions influenced the fate of the whole European community: in November 1918 and in the summer of 1920 (1918 – the regaining of the independence by Poland, 1920 – the halt of the Bolshevik offensive to Western Europe). JÓZEF PIŁSUDSKI

17 Tadeusz Kościuszko ( ) The leader of the national uprisal from 1794 in the defence of Constitution of May 3, 1791 and the sovereignty of the Polish State (Kościuszko Uprising). Thanks to his engineering and military skills he stood out during the battle of Saratoga during the American Revolutionary War. TADEUSZ KOŚCIUSZKO

18 The musical genius of the 19th century; he spent most of his life in Paris. Composer of the Romantic Period, who introduced the revolutionary changes in the world of piano music. His extraordinarily expressive style reflected itself in two piano concertos and many other smaller masterpieces. Frédéric Chopin

19 He is considered to be a founding father of the Polish opera. His operatic adaptations of the folk melodies in the times of partitions were lifting the spirit of Polish nation. STANISŁAW MONIUSZKO

20 The founder of the modern astronomy. He was born in 1473 in Toruń. He became famous after the publication of his work On the Revolutions of the Celestial Spheres presenting his heliocentric theory, which indicated the direction of all the subsequent studies. Nicolaus Copernicus

21 Thanks to the discovery of the radioactive element radium, she has made a big step in the development of atomic physics and cancer therapy. She was a woman full of passion and determination. She was completely devoted to science and in the end she died as a result of the illness caused by the contact with the radioactive substances. MARIA CURIE - SKŁODOWSKA

22 A poet and translator, one of the few women awarded with the Nobel Prize for Literature (1996). Her initial works were created yet in the spirit of Socialist Realism. Particularly worthy of attention are later poems of Szymborska, filled with a pessimistic reflection on the future of the man, captured in a deceptively casual and heavily ironic form. WISŁAWA SZYMBORSKA

23 Lech Wałęsa (born on 29 of September 1943 in Popowo) – Polish politician and trade union activist, an electrician by his profession. A cofounder and the first leader of "Solidarność", opositionist in the time of People's Republic of Poland. The president of the Republic of Poland in 1990–1995. The Man of the Year in 1981 according to "Time" magazine and a Nobel Pace Prize winner (1983). LECH WAŁĘSA

24 POLISH TRADITIONS

25 The time of fasting, concentration, praying and church services; it lasts 4- weeks and is the time of waiting for the Christmas celebration. During this time parties and dances are forbidden. This time should be the time of piety and prayer for the dead, who visit the living particularly in this time. During the time of Advent still in all the churches the special masses are served at dawn so called Roraty i.e. mattins – Holy Masses imploring for the comming of the Savior. ADVENT

26 It is the most ceremonial evening of the year and it begins Christmas, which belongs to the most family oriented holiday throughout the year, full of the numerous beautiful traditions and solemn mood and emotions. Christmas Eve should include the dishes prepared from all that is in the field, orchard, garden, forest and water". Christmas Eve meatless menu must contain red borscht, mushroom soup or fish soup, there should be also a herring, at least one fish dish – carp is very popular being prepared in many differrent ways. You cant forget about cabbage dishes, prune compote, sweet dumplings with poppy, poppy cake or poppy with delicacies – i.e. kutia. What is more gingerbread beongs to the traditional Christmas cakes. In addition the table is rich in fruit, nuts and various other sweets. Christmas Eve 24th of December

27 Commonly called the first day of Christmas in the past in Poland called Gody, Godnie lub Godne święta. The day of Christmas is started with the participation in the early church services, experienced in the atmosphere of solemnity and peace. You should restrict yourself from the work in this day. In earlier days on the first day of Christmas there were neither parties nor wedding receptions, and apart from the closest family there were no visits payed and receved. These days the mentioned bans are not that strictly obeyed, but still Christmas is spent in a calm and solemn atmosphere and usually among the closest family. CHRISTMAS 25th of DECEMBER

28 The second day of Christmas, its patron is Saint Stephen, the first Christian martyr. Nowadays in this day, mainly in rural areas, oat and other grain is blessed during the church services to commemorate the martyrdom of the saint, who was stoned. The members of the household, neighbours and relatives sprinkle themselves with the grain in their houses. Nowadays the second day of Christmas is the time of meetings, visits, receptions and weddings. Saint Stephens day begins the time of parties and, and rounds of visits payed by the priest, i.e. carnival. SAINT STEPHEN DAY 26 XII

29 In Poland New years Eve balls and parties were a rarity yet in the 19th century, and were organised only in the cities and in the richest housholds. Today balls and parties are already a tradition and by the rule the New Years Eve is spent among family, among the relatives and friends during the private receptions, in clubs, at the disco or in restaurants. NEW YEARS EVE 31 of DECEMBER

30 Carnival in Old Polish called zapusty, is the time from New Year to the Ash Wednesday. This is a time of happyness, time of parties and balls, which precedes the time of Lent. CARNIVAL

31 On the fourth sunday of Lent, the ceremony of destroying, sinking and burning of the straw figure called Marzanna was carried out. Marzanna was and is the depiction of winter and death, illnesses, all sorts of evil and torments harassing people. The ritual of Marzanna sinking was performed to cause the fast comming of spring. This custom is practiced till nowadays, however to a considerably lesser extent then earlier. Marzanny sinking is done now most commonly by children. MARZANNA

32 It constitutes the beginning of the most important religious celebrations, which are connected directly with the celebration of Easter Sunday. The Church celebrates in this day the triumphant enter of Christ to Jerusalem. In Poland there are numerous folk customs concerning palms which are considered to have unusual properties. Palms are made not only of willow but also other plants, such as yew branches, cowberries, boxwood, periwinkle and are decorated with dry flowers and ribbons. Households, farmyards and cattle in barns were sprinkled using palms formerly blessed in the church. Hanging under the thatch it has to protect from all the bad, spells and unhappyness, against the illness and most of all from fire. The blessed palms are stored with respect till the following Easter. PALM SUNDAY

33 It was called earlier Passover. It is the earliest established Christian celebration being celebrated to commemorate suffering, death and the resurection of Christ. Feast of the Resurrection is opened by the Resurrection Mass – the mass served on Holy Saturday at midnight, or at dawn on Easter Sunday. After the Resurrection Mass all the people go to their houses and eat the ceremonial family breakfast called blessed. EASTER

34 The most important custom of Easter Monday was and still is up to these days Dyngus, called śmigus too. The names śmigus and dyngus meant two separate customs, the first one was called green or dry śmigus and meant whipping one another with green twigs of willow, the second one was wet dyngus which meant pouring water on one another. EASTER MONDAY

35 These days are devoted to the memory of the dead. 1st of November was celebrated as a day of all Saints. It was a happy celebration then. It was marked with the white colour of liturgical vestments, used in this day during the Holy Mess. However, the 2nd of November – All Souls Day so in fact the celebration devoted to the memory of the dead, was introduced to the liturgy of the Church in 10th century. A requiem Masses for the souls of the dead were started to be served, as a counterbalance for the common European pagan All Souls Day customs. Today those practices are substituted with flowers and candles burning on the graves. Nowadays the candles being lit on the graves are the symbol of living memory of the dead, they symbolise Christ and eternal light. ALL SAINTS DAY AND ALL SOULS DAY 1.11, 2.11

36 This is a time of fortune telling for girls about love and marriage. This fortune telling were popular in all the regions of Poland. Despite its wide scope of occurrance the origin of these predictions and customs is not known so far. As a metter of fact all the historians agree that despite of its origin, fortune telling in St. Andrews day developed and finally shaped on the ground of Christian tradition. In the Roman Catholic Church Śt. Andrews day ends the liturgical year. There is the beginning of Advent. ANDRZEJKI 30.11

37 POLISH DANCES

38 Krakowiak (cracovienne) is a lively, Polish folk dance from the region of Cracow, being included in the Polish traditional dances, in 2/4 time signature and in the characteristic, syncopated rhythm. The name of the dance comes from the 18th century and relating to the group of dances having their own local names: mijany, dreptany, ścigany, skalmierzak, przebiegany and others. At the end of the 18th century the characteristic syncopated rhythm of cracovienne occurred in the symphonic music, and at the beginning of the 19th century this dance became popular in theatrical and instrumental music. CRACOVIENNE

39 The prototype of polonaise was a foot dance of the folk origin. It was being danced at first among the folk people, called in his prototype - hoppy from the second part of the 16th century and from the beginning of the 18th century, z czasem it became gradually popular at the magnat courts. In royal courts of Polish kings polonaise constituded the element of the court ceremonial, being the parade of aristocracy in front of the sovereign. It was danced at the beginnings of balls, nowadays it inaugurates some of the important receptions, to emphasize their ceremonial character. Regarding regional differences, polonaise was known under many different names: taniec polski, chodzony, pieszy, łażony, wolny, powolny, okrągły, starodawny, staroświecki, chmielowy, gęsi, wielki. There is an opinion that, the name polonez occurred not untill the 1930s of the 18th century, as a Polish translation of the French word polonaise; French a la polonaise or Italian alla polacca mean in the polonaise character". POLONAISE

40 Mazur (mazurka) is a Polish national dance in a lively tempo and ¾ time signature. The name of the dance comes from the Mazovia region. This dance denotes some features simmilar to oberek (in faster tempo) and kujawiak (in lower tempo). It is characterized with the emphasis on the second and the third part of the time measure and the rhythm figure of 4-syllabic group, which consists of two quavers and of two crotchets alternating with the group of three crotchets. It occurrs also in the stylized fashion under the name of mazurek. From the 19th century it was popular at the manor houses. Mazurs were composed among others by: Józef Elsner Karol Kurpiński Maria Szymanowska Stanisław Moniuszko – Mazur from Halka opera, Mazur from Straszny Dwór opera Fryderyk Chopin – Mazurek f-minor opus 63 Henryk Wieniawski MAZUR

41 It is the national dance having its origin in the folk wedding dances from the Kujawy region. The folk names of these dances were śpiący (sleeping) and kolebany (swaying). Atmospheric, lyrical melody in three-part time signature gives it a coquetrish character. Dance steps are based mainly on the calm walk and turns, only the musical accents are stressed by the stronger stumps. The basic step in kujawiak is a walked three- step (in one time measure there are three dancing steps). It is based on the walk in the rhythm of crotchet on the slightly bended legs. It derives from the kujawian wedding customs. It is a calm dance. We count to 3, time signature is 3/4. The composition described was played by Henryk Wieniawski. Kujawiak consists of the intro and three parts repeated two times. It often starts with the intro performed on the one note, which is based on the characteristic rhythm of this dance. Kujawiak is a dance in Mazowsze region. The oldest draft of kujawiak comes from about There are the drafts of H. Wieniawski and others. KUJAWIAK (KOUIAVIAK)

42 Known as obertas too, the fastest of all the national dances. Features: Very fast, in short rhythmic signatures, cheerful, lively, 3/4 time signature. Accents are simmilar as in mazur. The movement characteristics: The majority of spinning forms of movement Fast motion, light, zwiewny - airy, dynamic in the moments of stamping, full of swing movements when kneeling down The composers of stylized obereks: Henryk Wieniawski OBEREK

43 HISTORICAL MONUMENTS

44 It is among Polish historical monuments the building one of its own and unique- it is a great reconstruction of the historical building existing at this part of the Vistula enbankment till 1944, when after the capitulation of the Warsaw Uprising, it was blown up following the order of Hitler using thousands of holes drilled in the walls, yet in Furnishings - furniture, paintings, sculptures, clocks, candlesticks, panellings, doors, and even the pieces of the knocked off murals from the walls, were saved thanks to the workers of the Castle and the National Museum. Unprecedented rescue action was started in September 1939 in the bombarded and only partially destroyed monument. After the German invasion it turned into the stealing action aiming at taking everything which could serve for the further reconstruction of the foredoomed castle. The saved works of art from the interiors and thousands of fragments of window stonework, facade sculptures, fireplaces, were installed in the rebuilt walls of the Castle with the great devotion in years ROYAL CASTLE IN WARSAW

45 The highest building in Poland, at the center of Warsaw on the Parade Square. The property of the capital city of Warsaw. The object is governed by the comunal company "Zarząd Pałacu Kultury i Nauki" Ltd It was built in three years and opened to disposal in It was rised as a gift of the Soviet nation for the Polish nation, the building is a work of the Soviet architect Lew Rudniew, and is inspired by Chicagos and Moscows buildings. PALACE OF CULTURE AND SCIENCE IN WARSAW

46 The Old Town, called Starówka, is the most attractive place in Warsaw. The Marketplace of The Old Town is surrounded by Renaissance and Gothic tenements from the 14th and the 16th century. The frontages of the marketplace carry the names of people distinguished for the capital: south-west frontage is called Dekert Side, south-east is called Barss Side, north-east Zakrzewski Side, north-west Kołłątaj Side. There are two churches on Świętojańska street: the church of the Gracious Mother of God and St. John's Cathedral. Nearby, there is a gothic St. Johns Cathedral. It was build at the beginning of the 15th century. In this church there were mass services connected with the elections of kings. In the dungeons of the church are buried: president Gabriel Narutowicz, writer Henryk Sienkiewicz, primates of Poland, cardinals Adam Hlond and Stefan Wyszyński as well as Warsaw archbishops and Mazovian dukes. By the eastern side of Castle Square there is the Royal Castle. The castle was the place of the General Sejm sessions, the head office of the president. The main place of the Castle Square is occupied by the Sigismunds III Vasa Column, which was funded by Władysław IV. It was one of the first secular monuments in Poland. The column presents the Polish king as a defender of the feith, with a sword and a cross in his hand. WARSAW OLD TOWN

47 The greatest complex of the Polish architecture of Stanislavian classicism. During the reign of Jan III Sobieski the old suburban residence of Vasas - Ujazdów, was owned by Stanisław Herakliusz Lubomirski, Grand Marshal of the Crown, writer and thinker. Earlier by the castles zwierzyniec the duke ordered his architect Tylman from Gameren to build two pavilions - Ermitaż (Samotnia) and Łazienka, situated on the island of the small lake. The buildings were given a rich baroque style, partially maintained till today. In 1764 r. Ujazdów was bought by Stanisław August Poniatowski, who created there his sub- urban residence. After the failure of the castles alternation the king focussed his attention on the old Zwierzyniec. Through the three decades Dominik Merlini and Jan Christian Kamsetzer erected more than ten pavilions (Biały Dom, Myślewicki Palace), guard-house, theatres (Amphitheatre on the Island, Theatre in the Old Orangery), outhouse. The longest time was devoted to Łazienka tylmanowska, transformed into the Palace on the Water (on the Island). The building in its final shape consists of two wonderful facades – south and north, reflecting in the water. The interiors of the Palace constitute the highest achievement of the Stanislavian clasicism. Jan Christian Szuch and Karol Agricola were working during the projection of the vast park. ROYAL BATHS PARK IN WARSAW

48 Wawel Castle – the royal residence of the vintage character, situated on the Wawel Hill in Cracow of 7040 m² surface with 71 exhibition halls. The division of Wawel Castle – State Art Collection. WAWEL CASTLE

49 Archpresbyterial church dedicated to the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, known also as the St. Marys Church - one of the biggest and the most important, after the Wawel Cathedral, the church of Cracow, from 1962 it is distinguished with the title of the minor basilica. It belongs to the most famous monuments of Cracow and Poland. It is a gothic church built in the 14th and the 15th century. It is situated by the north-east corner of the Main Market Square, on St. Marys Square. The church is situated on the route of The Lesser Polish Way of St. Jacob from Sandomierz to Tyniec. St. Mary's Basilica in Cracow

50 Konzentrationslager Auschwitz, KL Auschwitz (Stammlager), including KL Birkenau (Auschwitz II) – the complex of German concentration camps, including the extermination camp in Oświęcim and the nearby towns functioning in years , the symbol of Holocaust. The names Auschwitz and Birkenau are the German equivalents of the Polish names Oświęcim and Brzezinka, used after the German invasion on Poland in 1939 and the incorporation of these lands by the Nazi Germany, when Oświęcim was included in the administrative district of Katowice region (Regierungsbezirk Kattowitz) province of Upper Silesia (Provinz Oberschlesien). In 1940 in this place German authorities created the camp used initially to keep the political prisoners and members of the opposition, mainly Poles. Later on it was developed into a main place of the massive extermination of about one million of Jews from all over the Europe, as well as many Poles, Gypsies, Soviet prisoners and the victims of other nationalities. It is the only concentration camp included in the list of UNESCO world heritage, it is included under the official name: Auschwitz-Birkenau. Niemiecki nazistowski obóz koncentracyjny i zagłady ( ) AUSCHWITZ - BIRKENAU

51 One of the oldest salt mines in the world. It is situated in Wieliczka near Cracow. From the 13th century to 1772 together with the "Bochnia" salt mine it was included in the Cracowian żupa. Salts mined in the mine come from the Miocene and were together with the deposit co- occurring tectonically moved by the movements of Alpine orogeny into the present place from the original localization far from about a few dozen kilometers. In 1976 the mine was included in the national register of the monuments. Two years later in 1978 it was introduced by UNESCO to the first List of the worlds cultural and natural heritage. In 1989 Wieliczka Salt Mine broadened the List of the Worlds Threatened Heritage, from which it was crossed off in From 1994, it is a monument of the Polish history too. On the 30 of June 1996 the mining process was completely stopped. WIELICZKA SALT MINE

52 Refectory belongs to the most interesting objects, constituting to the richness of the monastery of Jasna Góra. This interesting place was built in the second part of the 17th century. The sealing is covered with the rich moulding and polychromy. The author of this enchanting huge and rich monasterys dining room is Karol Dankwart. Refectory is used by monks for eating everyday meals, through the centuries outstanding individuals were entertained there. In 1670 the place held the wedding reception after the wedding ceremony of the Polish king Michał Korybut Wiśniowiecki with Eleonor of Austria. In the refectory, which is one of the most beautiful representative halls of the monastery, Pauline monks play host to heads of states, cardinals and bishops as well as pilgrimidge priests. JASNA GÓRA MONASTERY - HISTORIC MONASTERY INTERIORS

53 Teutonic Castle of Malbork (niem. Ordensburg Marienburg) – a three-part stronghold in gothic style of over m³ cubic capacity. It consists of the lower castle, the middle castle and the upper castle. It is one of the biggest preserved complexes of the gothic architecture in the world. The original name of the castle used by the Tutonic Order was Marienburg, i.e. Marys Castle. From the 14 of September 1309 to 1457the castle of Malbork was a residence of the great master of Tutonic Order, and the city was the capitol of the Tutonic Order state. THE CASTLE OF MALBORK

54 The complex of three brine graduation towers, erected in the 19th century in Ciechocinek, in Kuyavian-Pomeranian Voivodeship. It is the biggest wooden construction of this type in Europe. GRADUATION TOWERS IN CIECHOCINEK

55 The longest wooden pier in Europe. It has about half a kilometer of length a pedestrian part has 511,5 m, of which 458 m goes into Gdańsk Bay. It is one of the greatest cities attraction. PIER IN SOPOT

56 Białowieski National Park is the oldest national park in Poland and one of the oldest in Europe. Due to its unique values of nature Białowieski National Park was acclaimed in 1977r. by UNESCO as a Worlds Biosphere Reserve. The flora of the park counts about 4500 species, including 725 species of the vascular plants (floral plants, Lycopodiophyta, ferns), more than 200 species of Bryophyte, 277 species of lichen and about 3000 species of mushrooms – and many other are still discovered. Among the particularly rare plants in the park are 62 protected species. A special attention should be focussed on "Rezerwat Ścisły – (Nature Reserve), were practically from 1921 there were no forest works. According to the inventory data in 1991 the average age of tree stands in "Rezerwat Ścisły" (Nature Reserve) counted 126 years (the average for Poland is 54 years). Many trees from the forest have the impressive size and age. The biggest spruces achieve more than 52 m of height. The oldest oaks count more than 400 years of age. Some of them are becomming legendary, for example: Jagiełło Oak, which in the age of about 500 years was knocked down (in 1974) by the wind. The fauna of the park counts about species, with the majority of invertebrates. The most numerous (about 8500 species) group are insects (such as: the Lesser Purple Emperor, Catocala fraxini, Laothoe Populi, Urrusov Monochamus). In all the groups there is a lot of rare species or taken under the protection as endangered. There is about 250 numerous species of birds (including 120 nesting ones), such as: Black Stork, Common Crane, Hazel Grouse, Lesser Spotted Eagle, Pygmy-owl, Venus Flytrap and Collared Flycatcher, spotted Nutcracker, Common Rosefinch, raven and 8 species of Woodpecker. There are 7 species of reptiles (such as: European pond turtle) as well as 12 species of amphibians. There are 44 species of mammals, including: wisent, moose, beaver, lynx, wolf, stoat, otter, fox, Raccoon Dog, marten, weasel, polecat, forest dormouse, Birch Mouse, mountain hare, hedgehog, mole, shrew, water shrew. The symbol and the most famous representative of the park is a wisent. It is the biggest animal in the Park and in the whole Europe. Nowadays the heard living wild in the Polish part of the Park counts about 250 representatives. There is a closed wisent breeding center as well as pens for showing with wisent, zubron, deer, boars, koniks and wolves. BIAŁOWIESKI NATIONAL PARK

57 The royal castle, later on of private property, one of the most precious Renaissance monuments of Polish architecture, lying on the rocky headland of the Prądnik Valley, on the Trail of the Eagles Nest. The castle being originally gothic, was built in the middle of the 14th century by Casimir the Great, at the place of the earlier wooden structure. It was later owned by Szafrańce and Zebrzydowscy, and it was being rebuilt and extended, for example in years according to the project of the Italian architecture of M. Castiglione. PIESKOWA SKAŁA CASTLE

58 Ogrodzieniec Castle – the ruins of the middle-age castle lying in Jura Krakowsko- Częstochowska, erected in 14th-15th century by the family of Włodkowie Sulimczykowie, later rebuilt. The castle lies at the highest point of Wyżyna Krakowsko-Częstochowska - Góra Zamkowa situated at 515,5 m above sea level. The ruins lie on the Trail of the Eagles Nests and are available for visiting. Owing to its name, the majority of tourists claim wrongly, that it is situated in Ogrodzieniec town. In fact it is situated in Podzamcze, about 2 km to the east of Ogrodzieniec. THE CASTLE OF OGRODZIENIEC

59 The END


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